I think that a positive attitude is so very important when it comes to cultivating a successful webcomic. Having a positive attitude comes from understanding when there are things that you cannot change and working around them rather than hitting them in the face with a tunafish.
For example – I was on a panel several years ago with another webcomic artist who was totally angry that her friends were not reading her comic. She stated that if she found that a friend of hers hadn’t read her comic in awhile she ceased being friends with them because in her opinion they had abandoned her. She then expressed anger that Penny Arcade didn’t reply to her email when she asked them to post a link to her comic.
She went on to spit hateful fire and venom about this so loudly that the entire audience was turned off because of her negativity. It backfired, and I haven’t seen her since on the convention circuit.
Your friends and other comics in the scene are not necessarily your target audience. I am friends with people who never read comics. They know that I draw a comic, but they just don’t enjoy reading any sort of comic.
This is OK.
As far as the big comics go – most of us veterans know each other and respect each other very much, but we just don’t have time to read everyone else’s comic all the time.
This is also OK.
No one but me is obligated to read or promote my work. I really appreciate it when people read me and post links to my comic, but I consider it to be a bonus.
A relaxed attitude is a must if you don’t want to scare people off. Not everyone is your fan. They might still be your friend. This is all OK. It’s physically impossible to be universally liked. Accept this and move forward. A positive attitude is so very important when it comes to being a brand that people feel comfortable around. Forcing people to do things they don’t want to do never works, anyway.
While you are busy being nice, you are creating real connections through friends in the scene who are more likely to be able to help you when you need it. Just remember to help them if you can in the process to get a combo bonus of comics fun!